Why are New York’s negligence laws important in lawsuits following motorcycle accidents?

It is much more common for a motorcycle rider to suddenly lose control of their vehicle and sustain injuries than drivers of other kinds of automobiles. This is because there is much less room for error in operation, and motorcycle riders require a significant amount of extra training and experience.

However, comparative negligence laws are beneficial to those riding motorcycles. This is because even if they appear to be mostly at fault for an accident, comparative negligence still allows them to collect a judgment from other people or entities who are partially at fault as well.  

Off duty police officer dies in fatal crash

An NYPD officer was riding his motorcycle to work early in the morning when he died in a crash in Queens.

The accident occurred on the Belt Parkway southbound lanes between Merrick Boulevard and Linden Boulevard at approximately 5:30am. Somewhere in this general area, the 42 year old male victim was lost control of the Yamaha bike and was ejected from his seat before his body was struck by a car and hit a guardrail. The man was later pronounced dead at the Franklin General Medical Center. He was wearing a helmet at the time of the accident, but he still experienced severe trauma to his head and back.

Police did not issue any traffic citations or file criminal charges against the driver during the investigation at the scene. Both the New York City Mayor and NYPD issued statements commending the officer for his 16 years of service and expressing remorse.

Who is responsible based on the state’s negligence laws?

In a situation such as this, an experienced accident attorney can spot a number of crucial issues that are relevant to a negligence lawsuit. There may have been issues with the motorcycle that caused it to malfunction, which made the driver lose control. After this ejection, the driver who struck the victim afterward may have ultimately caused his death. All of these issues are related to how fault can be divided in a negligence lawsuit. Negligence is a legal term that simply means the careless actions of one person caused injuries to another.

Even if the driver was partially at fault for causing this accident due to human error or other factors, local negligence laws allow fault to be divided between multiple parties. The state of New York has adopted a comparative negligence standard, which means that the amount of damages awarded to the victim and his family will only be reduced by his level of fault rather than barring a victim from recovery altogether. This means that others who are found to be partially responsible for the accident will still have to pay out some amount of damages relative to the amount of harm they caused.

Get legal help following a motorcycle crash

There are lawyers who specialize in motorcycle accidents in the New York City area. The Licatesi Law Group has been helping victims for over 40 years and they provide a free initial consultation.